Ro­bot Rid­ers

BBC Earth (Asia) - - Snapshot -

One group of work­ers that we sus­pect won’t be grum­bling about ro­bots tak­ing their jobs are the jock­eys in Mid­dle East­ern camel races. Camel rac­ing dates back thou­sands of years, but the sport has a dark side. The camels were tra­di­tion­ally rid­den by boy jock­eys as young as four years old, many of whom were bought and sold as slaves, and kept de­lib­er­ately mal­nour­ished.

Ac­cord­ingly, since 2004 the use of child jock­eys has been out­lawed in Qatar and the UAE, and the camels are rid­den by ro­bot jock­eys in­stead.

Early ver­sions of the ro­bots were quite ‘me­chan­i­cal’ in ap­pear­ance, but now more hu­man-like ro­bots are used as this ap­pears to be less dis­tress­ing for the camels.

PHOTO: GETTY

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